Shelby County Schools is a K-12 school system located in Birmingham, Alabama. With a mission to make every student a graduate and every graduate prepared for their future, their vision is to be the model for excellence in education.
As a school system made up of 31 schools and 1600 teachers and administrators, the importance of being efficient, accurate, and consistent with their processes and data was paramount. Before PerfectApps, Jason McGinnis, Shelby County Schools Network Administrator, had worked with a number of other solutions to build workflows and apps. The issue he continued to run into however, was that these solutions did not allow for multiple users, they consistently lost data, and did not offer them the ability to scale. Additionally, they found that interfaces were not customizable and the levels of data validation they needed to maintain accurate data were just not present.
After realizing their current solutions were still not the answer to his needs to create web forms, applications, and manage and report on data sets, Jason found PerfectApps no-code development platform in 2009. From the start, they’ve been able to create, manage, and streamline a number of different workflow processes across the school system. In fact, almost all of their central paper forms have been converted to custom no-code solutions built with PerfectApps.
Their primary use-case since the beginning has been the Professional Development Leave application. When a teacher requests time off for professional development, there needed to be a system in place to assign a substitute teacher but also determine who in the system is paying for that substitute. Jason built a no-code application to support a workflow process that notifies the appropriate stakeholders to approve the requests, while also routing the payment for the substitute teacher to the responsible party.
In addition to the Professional Development Leave application, Shelby County Schools has found opportunities to build other web forms, applications and workflow processes including:
- Planning forms for vacation and sick leave
- Student discipline
- Field trip resource allocation, policy compliance and cost/payment allocation
- Dyslexia resource requests
- Room scheduling
- Emergency contact forms
While using PerfectApps for over ten years, Jason notes two key features that stand out above the competition:
- While collecting data accurately and efficiently is always important, the reporting of that data is just as, if not more important. He points to PerfectApps’ ability to bring advanced data visualization to the table, while also having the flexibility to integrate with other databases as needed. That flexibility makes integrating with existing data structures possible, which proves to be extremely valuable.
- The WYSIWYG (what-you-see-is-what-you-get) Designer enables Jason and his team to build solutions from concept to deployment quickly and easily. And it’s not just the user interface layout and design, but also the visual aspect of defining the workflow, logic, and conditions – in a no-code format – lends itself to PerfectApps’ ease of use.
“We knew we needed a no-code tool where we could quickly design and update custom solutions easily. PerfectApps has been great for being able to quickly design and get something into production…faster than what we could have done with other solutions.”
Shelby County Schools